(Catfish?) eggs still in egg form

Earlier last week I wrote about clusters of eggs we discovered in our fish tank. We guessed it would either be fish or snail eggs. Quickly the process of elimination helped me realize that it’s not snail eggs, because one of our snails died (exact time is unknown, hard to tell with snails). The lady at Petco said that it’s probably catfish eggs because they are more likely to lay eggs than other kinds of fish.

We have been vigilant about the eggs and have moved them comfortably into their own tank. Every morning and evening, I document with pictures to see if any visible changes are seen. Nothing dramatic so far. What do we notice is that the eggs are whiter and slightly bigger.

I read that newborn fish are very fragile, can’t swim or eat well, and are only able to consume tiny food bits multiple times throughout the day. Regular fish food is too big for their mouths, and they could possibly starve to death. Again, google teems with advice and suggestions on how to make these kinds of fish food. But it informed hopefuls that even under the best conditions, the eggs may not hatch.

As for food prep: the easiest one is getting a cup of aquarium water and letting it sit out in the sun until the water turns green. That has nutrients for the baby fish. I put plastic wrap over it, to prevent spillage, but Chris told me to make holes on top for oxygen. I checked right now, and the water is nowhere near green. Another feed: if the babies hatch and you have nothing on hand, boiled egg yolk could do the trick. Add into the tank with small liquid dropper or wrap yolk in cheesecloth and wait for the yolk-infused water to settle near the babies. And of course, for people like me, pet stores sell micro food for baby fish. We also lined the bottom of the tank with faux greenery so the babies could hide and the food could settle near them.

It usually takes 5-10 days for hatching, and we are on day 8. Last night I asked the kids if I could take one egg and, for the sake of science, dissect it. After serious consideration with frowns and hand wringing, they agreed. One condition: get one that looked almost dead. I haven’t decided if I will yet.

Our process went from elated at discovery, furiously researching hatching fish eggs, worried about how to set up a conducive newborn fish habitat. and making a field trip to Petco looking for supplies and asking questions.

Still waiting. And when they do hatch, they’ll be so small and cute!!

Fish or snail eggs? Maybe new additions to our tank.

Kids are freaking out! We’ve had our 10-gallon fish tank for about an year and no fish or snails have laid eggs. Yet the kids have always been hopeful that we will get a larger tank once the fish babies come. The drama of our fish tank go way back starting with tadpoles metamorphosed to African clawed frogs. Long story short: Rocket and Ribbit are buried outside our garage.

Once we saw a super tiny snail stuck on the aquarium glass, but it soon disappeared. Probably got eaten up by the bigger fish (not for sure but I have a hunch it’s the Betta). Since I’m a novice aquarium keeper, I had no expectation of our fish population growing.

I’ve been doing the bare minimum for our aquarium: cleaning every 2 weeks and feeding the fish crew every other night.

However, when I glanced over at the tank tonight, I discovered a cluster of little white balls attached to the leaf of our live plants. I quickly called the kids over to check them out. Omg. There was clapping, happy screaming, and loud talk of how to transfer the babies to safety into the spare tank.

Which will hatch? Fish or snails? It’s a mystery for now. If conditions are right, we’ll have an answer in in 3-5 days (that’s what I found by googling). I hope some will survive or the kids will shed tears again and beg me to get them new pets. Ahhhhhhh, no!

If they all survive, we may need to give some away. This subject was just brought up with Chris, and it was a big ‘No’ from both kids. Here we go on a new live science adventure.

The following are the stages of fish development from egg to fish:

  1. larvae
  2. fry
  3. fingerling
  4. fish

Photo of a determined tree

Can’t stop this tree

How does this happen?! And how do you fix it?

Still an interesting sight, and a great reminder that fences can’t bind nature.

“Something there is that doesn’t love a wall that sends the frozen ground swell under it.”

“My apple trees will never get across
and eat the cones under his pines,I tell him. He only says,’Good fences make good neighbors.'”

“Mending Walls” by Robert Frost

We want a furry, cute pet!!

Kids want a pet: anything furry and cute. This topic is brought up on a daily basis and potential animal choices run the wild gamut: dog, cat, bearded dragon, baby otter, or a cub cheetah. Their latter choices baffle me. I’m like, what?! How do you cuddle a cheetah?

We’ve had various tiny pets over the years, like butterflies, ladybugs, frogs, fish and snails (still our pets), and now a horde of ants. Yesterday two plastic vials of ants were delivered to our mailbox.

Thankfully, they survived the journey this time. The first batch died from overheating in the mailbox.

So we’re excited to spend the next few weeks learning more about ant behavior, life cycle, and characteristics. They’ll be released outside after a month or so. Attachment is little and care minimal. So for a month, kids will be preoccupied and less prone to badger me for a furry pet. Oh yay!

But when I’m feeling energetic, I wonder how much fun it’d be to have a small Corgi. Their tailless tooshies and short legs are so cute. Chris is unlikely to say yes unless I surprise him by getting one. Lol. Nah, too big a commitment to decide myself.

Pinterest photo
2 hours later. Busy building tunnels. We added some water and a halved grape.

Couple hours later: building new paths. Peculiar behavior observed: ants carry a dead one to the top of the hill or drop them into a tunnel.
Almost 24 hours later. New workers have begun digging on the back side of the farm.

Newborn kitty getting fed at animal shelter. Kids wanted to see what kind of animals you would find at a shelter.
Our Silver Molly, named Shiny, resting on the Betta hammock.

Twisted: Finds in nature

In nature twisted things are beautifully complex, elegant, and harmonious in its surroundings. So for this photo post I looked through my photo gallery and picked some that I had taken in the past without knowing that they could be interpreted as twisted.

I hope you enjoy them!

One of the amphibians’ windows at California Academy of Sciences. Can you find the camouflaged frog?

Found this 2-legged carrot in a bag of store-bought carrots. We decided to draw it a smiley face.

Twisted stems of flowers all clambering to say hello